Video: Romney comes out swinging on green energy

posted at 10:41 am on October 4, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Since I missed the debate last night, thanks to my school schedule this year, I’ve had to content myself with the transcript and clips of key exchanges between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.  This one, I believe, is one of the most telling. It features a well-rehearsed zinger from Romney on green energy subsidies — “you don’t pick winners and losers, you only pick losers” — but goes on to make a much larger point about the scope of energy subsidies under Obama:

ROMNEY: … to oil, to tax breaks, then companies going overseas. So let’s go through them one by one.

First of all, the Department of Energy has said the tax break for oil companies is $2.8 billion a year. And it’s actually an accounting treatment, as you know, that’s been in place for a hundred years. Now…

OBAMA: It’s time to end it.

ROMNEY: And in one year, you provided $90 billion in breaks to the green energy world.

Now, I like green energy as well, but that’s about 50 years’ worth of what oil and gas receives. And you say Exxon and Mobil. Actually, this $2.8 billion goes largely to small companies, to drilling operators and so forth.

ROMNEY: But, you know, if we get that tax rate from 35 percent down to 25 percent, why that $2.8 billion is on the table. Of course it’s on the table. That’s probably not going to survive you get that rate down to 25 percent.

But don’t forget, you put $90 billion, like 50 years’ worth of breaks, into — into solar and wind, to Solyndra and Fisker and Tester and Ener1. I mean, I had a friend who said you don’t just pick the winners and losers, you pick the losers, all right? So this — this is not — this is not the kind of policy you want to have if you want to get America energy secure.

The second topic, which is you said you get a deduction for taking a plant overseas. Look, I’ve been in business for 25 years. I have no idea what you’re talking about. I maybe need to get a new accountant.

LEHRER: Let’s…

ROMNEY: But — but the idea that you get a break for shipping jobs overseas is simply not the case.

Romney destroys two canards of the Left: that corporations ship jobs overseas for tax breaks, and that Big Oil gets favorable treatment from government.  Corporations ship jobs overseas because they compete in those markets as domestic producers, and because labor and regulatory burdens are cheaper.  There isn’t a tax break that says “for every 1,000 jobs you export, you get $10 million in tax credits.”

Romney does even better with the green-energy subsidies, comparing them to Obama’s oft-used boogeymen Exxon and Mobile.  The scale for green-energy subsidies is an order of magnitude larger than that of the tax breaks (not subsidies) oil producers get — and as Romney points out, many of them small businesses that produce oil on behalf of or to sell to Exxon, Mobile, and other large entities.  Even if one considers tax breaks a subsidy, the amount of energy produced per subsidy dollar from oil far outstrips that of the green-energy industry.  The latter can’t survive without direct government subsidies, and for decades have promised that mass-produced green energy is just around the corner.  In the meantime, more than a few Obama green-energy subsidy companies have gone out of business and taken taxpayer funds with them.

Government doesn’t pick winners and losers, it only picks losers — because winners don’t need government subsidies to succeed in the first place. It’s not the role of government to intervene in those markets in the first place, which leads us to another good moment for Romney in the debate.  Jim Lehrer asked him to define the role of government, and Romney spent two minutes on this solid response:

The role of government: Look behind us. The Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. The role of government is to promote and protect the principles of those documents.

First, life and liberty. We have a responsibility to protect the lives and liberties of our people, and that means a military second to none. I do not believe in cutting our military. I believe in maintaining the strength of America’s military.

Second, in that line that says we are endowed by our creator with our rights, I believe we must maintain our commitment to religious tolerance and freedom in this country. That statement also says that we are endowed by our creator with the right to pursue happiness as we choose. I interpret that as, one, making sure that those people who are less fortunate and can’t care for themselves are cared by — by one another.

We’re a nation that believes that we’re all children of the same god and we care for those that have difficulties, those that are elderly and have problems and challenges, those that are disabled. We care for them. And we — we look for discovery and innovation, all these things desired out of the American heart to provide the pursuit of happiness for our citizens.

But we also believe in maintaining for individuals the right to pursue their dreams and not to have the government substitute itself for the rights of free individuals. And what we’re seeing right now is, in my view, a — a trickle-down government approach, which has government thinking it can do a better job than free people pursuing their dreams. And it’s not working.

And the proof of that is 23 million people out of work. The proof of that is 1 out of 6 people in poverty. The proof of that is we’ve gone from 32 million on food stamps to 47 million on food stamps. The proof of that is that 50 percent of college graduates this year can’t find work.

“Trickle-down government” is clearly another practiced zinger … and a pretty good one, too.


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I just wish he had mentioned rising gas prices. (I couldn’t bring myself to watch Barackabama until the last 10 minutes or so, so I’m not sure if Romney did mention gas prices).

SouthernGent on October 4, 2012 at 11:20 AM

This is freakin hilarious.

Al Gore blames Obama performance on Denver’s altitude.

BacaDog on October 4, 2012 at 11:16 AM

Actually, of all the excuses I’ve heard this morning, this one actually holds a little water with me.

I had to fly into Denver and work on a campaign, on really short notice. And I was useless for the first 36 hours I was there. If you aren’t prepared for it, it can screw you up.

That being said, Romney had the foresight to prepare for the debate in Denver, and 0 preferred LV, where the golfing is just so choice

JohnGalt23 on October 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Liberals won’t want to admit this, but Romney looked more virile and more attractive last night. I’ve never found Obama to be particularly good looking. Four years ago, Liberals were swooning over him. That’s because he looked better four years ago, and that much better in contrast with the much older, shorter, war ravaged McCain.

Romney is now 7 years younger than McCain was in 2008, and he is in remarkable physical shape for a 65-year-old man. He is also about the same height as Obama, more muscular, and after raising five sons, knows how to deal with other men.

One other point: when Obama was speaking, Romney looked at him, listening intently, with a friendly expression on his face. When Romney was speaking, Obama was either grimacing, shaking his head, or looking down at the floor, as if he was afraid to listen to Romney or his criticism of Obama’s own record. Many debate watchers could have noticed this and wondered: Which of these men do we want discussing American policy with people like Bibi Netanyahu or Vladimir Putin or “Moody ImaNutJob” from Iran? Maybe someone who can look them straight in the eyes?

Steve Z on October 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Watching the little poser squirm… watching the expressions of pain on his face when confronted squarely with facts… it was exquisite.

petefrt on October 4, 2012 at 11:01 AM

What we saw last night was Obama the socialist and Romney the decent human being without the media “helping” define them.

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Given the standard liberal’s grasp on the English language, tending to take the interpretation that makes them more indignant, that turns into “tax breaks for shipping jobs overseas,” i.e. there is a tax break written into the corporate-controlled tax code that gives them a break on taxes if they stimulate other countries’ economies.

So, not a canard. Just a gross misinterpretation.

mintycrys on October 4, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Exactly. This is how liberals turn a “tax cut” into “spending”, not building a thing as “savings” (which is then spent somewhere else as an “investment”).

The biggest one of all, though, is how they determine that the money owed to the SSA by the US Treasury is not “debt”.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 11:24 AM

OBUMBLER!!! OBUMBLER….He makes Jimmy “Peanuts” Carter look competent! OBUMBLER!!! OBUMBLER…your days of destroying the American way are over. OBUMBLER!!! OBUMBLER…pack your things early, you’re going to want a head start back to Shitcago…OBUMBLER!!!

Copyright Tbone McGraw all rights reserved…HAHAHAHAHA

Tbone McGraw on October 4, 2012 at 11:24 AM

One other point: when Obama was speaking, Romney looked at him, listening intently, with a friendly expression on his face. When Romney was speaking, Obama was either grimacing, shaking his head, or looking down at the floor, as if he was afraid to listen to Romney or his criticism of Obama’s own record.

Without POTUS, he’s completely lost in a crowd. He’s an anti-social Socialist.

If thats possible.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 11:25 AM

Didn’t watch the debates, but that clip above shows me a man who looks just like my kindergarten kids did when I scolded them for doing something bad–and they know it’s true.

Don L on October 4, 2012 at 11:26 AM

you know its a good day when the “fact check” websites try to debunk Mitt by saying:
Death panels are there but there not reeeaaally “death panels”.

The fact that they have to admit that a panel exists shows they lose.

THIS WIN IS HUGE PEOPLE! HUGE!

Despite the talking heads saying this wasn’t a “game changer”, it truly was. All you had to do was watch Frank Luntz studio group. Romney peeled off a ton of Obama voters.

johnnyboy on October 4, 2012 at 11:26 AM

This is freakin hilarious.

Al Gore blames Obama performance on Denver’s altitude.

BacaDog on October 4, 2012 at 11:16 AM

So why was Romney ok then? It’s not like he was debating via satellite from the coast.

Doughboy on October 4, 2012 at 11:26 AM

Actually, of all the excuses I’ve heard this morning, this one actually holds a little water with me.

JohnGalt23 on October 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

High altitude causes people to smirk?

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 11:27 AM

Despite the talking heads saying this wasn’t a “game changer”, it truly was. All you had to do was watch Frank Luntz studio group. Romney peeled off a ton of Obama voters.

johnnyboy on October 4, 2012 at 11:26 AM

IMO there are many Obama supporters looking for a way to vote for Romney. Last night’s performance gave many that opening.

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 11:28 AM

And the only reason the media can’t find the big “aha” moment in the debate or the big “zinger” is because everything that came out of Romney’s mouth was amazing.

He didn’t need any “zingers”! The whole debate was a zinger. I agree with Bill Kristol (which never happens).

This was the greatest debate I have seen in 20 years.

johnnyboy on October 4, 2012 at 11:28 AM

And the proof of that is 23 million people out of work. The proof of that is 1 out of 6 people in poverty. The proof of that is we’ve gone from 32 million on food stamps to 47 million on food stamps. The proof of that is that 50 percent of college graduates this year can’t find work.

strong work, Mitt.

ted c on October 4, 2012 at 11:29 AM

Actually, of all the excuses I’ve heard this morning, this one actually holds a little water with me.

JohnGalt23 on October 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

.
But deep down, you know the blame must go to TOTUS

FlaMurph on October 4, 2012 at 11:29 AM

Feeling light headed in Colorado should have made The CHOOM LEADER feel right at home.

johnnyboy on October 4, 2012 at 11:30 AM

This is freakin hilarious.

Al Gore blames Obama performance on Denver’s altitude.

BacaDog on October 4, 2012 at 11:16 AM

That is freaking hilarious.

Heck, the guy spends half of his time at 35,000 feet riding around on Air Force One going to parties and fundraisers, and the left is blaming altitude for his lameness?

If anyone should be permanently adjusted to high altitudes, it’s the SCoAMF.

UltimateBob on October 4, 2012 at 11:30 AM

Not only that but Obama would ramble incoherently and cover 5 or 6 topics, and Mitt would keep track of all of them and come back and destroy Obama’s points one by one, eventually in desperation Jim Lerher took to interrupting Romney to keep the carnage at a minimum.
SWalker on October 4, 2012 at 11:12 AM

He really would. Like I said, I couldn’t even stay focused on listening to him and I was trying. But it was literally involuntary basically. He’d start talking and 25 seconds later my brain would go, “I need to change my squad on FIFA for my next match because it’s a cup game and Chelsea isn’t gonna be an easy win so I need to put in my good guys…” and about 2 minutes later if remember, “Hey! I’m watching the debate! What was hey saying?” in time to catch the next 2 minutes of Obama being allowed to continue over time rambling.

He just couldn’t make a clear and concise point even if he had valid remarks that could have been made.

Romney didn’t have any of those troubles. He was engaging, listenable, and succinct. You gotta give it to him, he was on his game last night.

Boomer_Sooner on October 4, 2012 at 11:31 AM

High altitude causes people to smirk?

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 11:27 AM

I thought Lord Obama descended to go to Denver?

faraway on October 4, 2012 at 11:32 AM

thought Lord Obama descended to go to Denver?

faraway on October 4, 2012 at 11:32 AM

.
That was 2008.

He’s had a run of bad luck since.

FlaMurph on October 4, 2012 at 11:34 AM

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Being side-by-side with Romney is not favorable for Øbama. Next to Romney, he sounds like a rambling amateur and looks like a peevish, over-tall juvenile dressed up in an over-large suit.

BTW, I understand that Romney’s height is 6’2″ and Øbama is 6’1″. Was Øbama wearing lifters in his shoes last night?

petefrt on October 4, 2012 at 11:36 AM

So why was Romney ok then? It’s not like he was debating via satellite from the coast.

Doughboy on October 4, 2012 at 11:26 AM

He prepped for the debate in CO, at altitude.

0, on the other hand, decided his golf game was better served at 2000 feet, in Las Vegas…

JohnGalt23 on October 4, 2012 at 11:38 AM

One of Romney’s strongest moments was his defense of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. He really established a stark ideological contrast and one that was visually compelling.

RedRedRice on October 4, 2012 at 10:45 AM

…one of my favorite moments in the debate…and very few are talking about it!

KOOLAID2 on October 4, 2012 at 11:38 AM

I’ll get my $20.

Ben Hur on October 4, 2012 at 11:39 AM

Obama may now have to release his college transcripts; not to prove his citizenship, but to prove he actually went to college.

Tater Salad on October 4, 2012 at 11:20 AM

Funny you should mention that, as my wife and I were watching the debate last night, we were both wondering aloud, “Has this guy ever even debated before in his life?”

Barky was getting CRUSHED at every turn, he had no good comebacks for anything, every word out of his mouth was just another tired, over-rehearsed, and (mostly) off-topic talking point from his campaign.

It was abundantly clear that he has been coddled his whole life, never really having to answer for himself and never being questioned on his failures. Every time he gives one of his lame speeches, the teary-eyed MSM pundits afterwards proclaim it as “the greatest speech evah“.

I would love to see his college transcripts. I think they would be very telling.

UltimateBob on October 4, 2012 at 11:39 AM

Without POTUS, he’s completely lost in a crowd. He’s an anti-social Socialist.

If thats possible.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 11:25 AM

To be a socialist you have to think lowly of other people in general (they cannot take care of themselves) or think way to highly of yourself (Only I can make their lives better and I need to control them to do it).

So, in actuality, in my opinion, a sociable socialist would be an oxymoron.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 11:40 AM

From the post/transcript:

But don’t forget, you put $90 billion, like 50 years’ worth of breaks, into — into solar and wind, to Solyndra and Fisker and Tester and Ener1. I mean, I had a friend who said you don’t just pick the winners and losers, you pick the losers, all right? So this — this is not — this is not the kind of policy you want to have if you want to get America energy secure.

First, I think Romney said “Tesla,” not “Tester.”

I watched the debates live on C-span, alone, to concentrate on Romney’s delivery, not wanting to be distracted or influenced by the HA comments or the enemedia’s. Quite honestly, while I thought Romney was making good points throughout the debate, it seemed like he was having to rush to cover his points, speaking like he was making a bullet-point business presentation to an already knowledgeable board. He was making them, but I didn’t feel like he was effectively communicating them his to viewers– not providing enough elaboration and content, not pausing for effect, perhaps not dramatic enough (not that I wanted him to go into preacher mode, either), talking too much and going too fast– and the quote cited above is exactly the point at which all of that coalesced for me. I was shouting at the tv: “Stop! Explain what Solyndra was! Tell the viewers it went bankrupt! Tell how many taxpayer dollars were poured down the rat hole never to be recovered! Don’t just list the failures, describe how they failed, how much it cost us!”

His illustration of Obama’s preference for green boondoggles was striking and powerful– “But don’t forget, you put $90 billion, like 50 years’ worth of breaks, into… into solar and wind”– and Romney alluded to the bankruptcies with his devastating line: “you don’t just pick the winners and losers, you pick the losers…” But I felt that he threw away the impact of it by rushing on to his next line.

Judging from the overwhelming positive reviews, I happily concede that my anxiety over how effectively Romney was making his points appears to have clouded my own perception of the debates. (I did, however, agree with everyone that Obama was awful and unprepared. He was less rushed and more relaxed when speaking– but that’s because he really had nothing to say.) Romney clearly won this, and looks even better in the transcripts.

But it was funny confirmation of that often disparity between what one thought one heard, and how the popular perception is completely different. I don’t think this is one where everyone went to bed thinking Romney won, and in a few days the media will have the voters believing that Obama won. This one is not fixable for Obama. Like Benghazi.

de rigueur on October 4, 2012 at 11:41 AM

Actually, of all the excuses I’ve heard this morning, this one actually holds a little water with me.

I had to fly into Denver and work on a campaign, on really short notice. And I was useless for the first 36 hours I was there. If you aren’t prepared for it, it can screw you up.

That being said, Romney had the foresight to prepare for the debate in Denver, and 0 preferred LV, where the golfing is just so choice…

JohnGalt23 on October 4, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Even if this had any value, it proves the point that Obama is totally unprepared for whatever it is he decides to do. Its readily apparent he thought he could drop in, unleash a few cliche`s, smirk disdainfully at Romney a few times, and then leave believing he had destroyed Mitt for all to see.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 11:43 AM

Here is a good article on the issue of a tax breaks for shipping jobs overseas. There is no tax deduction for moving jobs overseas, but there are differences in tax rates paid by corporations depending on the host country in which they operate.

Obama thinks he can force companies to stay in the U.S. by taking away any tax advantage of operating overseas. This from the man who brought us cash for clunkers. The law of unintended consequences will likely result not in jobs staying in the U.S., but in corporations moving their headquarters out of the U.S. to more tax friendly countries.

Fore more years (of golf for Obama)

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 11:45 AM

And what did Mr. Green Jeans have to say about King Barry’s performance?

Al Gore Blames Denver for Obama Debate Loss

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mtkw8stAlrM&feature=share

Today’s *chuckle*
I mean … you just can’t make up this stuff!
~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on October 4, 2012 at 11:45 AM

One of Romney’s strongest moments was his defense of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. He really established a stark ideological contrast and one that was visually compelling.

RedRedRice on October 4, 2012 at 10:45 AM

…one of my favorite moments in the debate…and very few are talking about it!

KOOLAID2 on October 4, 2012 at 11:38 AM

It was a wash for me. He used the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence to pivot into his defense of the socialist welfare state.

The role of government — look behind us: the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

The role of government is to promote and protect the principles of those documents. First, life and liberty. We have a responsibility to protect the lives and liberties of our people, and that means the military, second to none. I do not believe in cutting our military. I believe in maintaining the strength of America’s military.

Second, in that line that says, we are endowed by our Creator with our rights — I believe we must maintain our commitment to religious tolerance and freedom in this country. That statement also says that we are endowed by our Creator with the right to pursue happiness as we choose. I interpret that as, one, making sure that those people who are less fortunate and can’t care for themselves are cared by — by one another.

We’re a nation that believes we’re all children of the same God. And we care for those that have difficulties — those that are elderly and have problems and challenges, those that disabled, we care for them. And we look for discovery and innovation, all these thing desired out of the American heart to provide the pursuit of happiness for our citizens.

But we also believe in maintaining for individuals the right to pursue their dreams, and not to have the government substitute itself for the rights of free individuals. And what we’re seeing right now is, in my view, a — a trickle-down government approach which has government thinking it can do a better job than free people pursuing their dreams. And it’s not working.

That is an extraordinary interpretation. I would say, a very progressive liberal one that proves his views are progressive.

His only saving grace is that he is not in fact Obama.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

Romney alluded to the bankruptcies with his devastating line: “you don’t just pick the winners and losers, you pick the losers…” But I felt that he threw away the impact of it by rushing on to his next line.

de rigueur on October 4, 2012 at 11:41 AM

Romney put a lot of information out there, but think about it: When that line (and several other great lines) gets repeated 30 or more times over the next couple of days in various sources, people will have a chance to digest it more fully.

Vashta.Nerada on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

Did you hear that thud in the back during the debate? Maybe a greek column falling? *It’s a sign*!!

ziggyville on October 4, 2012 at 11:48 AM

Did you hear that thud in the back during the debate? Maybe a greek column falling? *It’s a sign*!!

ziggyville on October 4, 2012 at 11:48 AM

rofl

faraway on October 4, 2012 at 11:49 AM

That is an extraordinary interpretation. I would say, a very progressive liberal one that proves his views are progressive.

His only saving grace is that he is not in fact Obama.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

So increasing defense spending by $2T, as Obama said Romney would and was not denied, is now considered a very progressive liberal view? By this logic, both Clintons should be branded as TEA party zealots for having the conservative view of gutting defense spending.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 11:51 AM

Did you hear that thud in the back during the debate? Maybe a greek column falling? *It’s a sign*!!

ziggyville on October 4, 2012 at 11:48 AM

It was a really huge ego hitting the floor.

Vashta.Nerada on October 4, 2012 at 11:52 AM

BTW, did anyone notice that Obama said Social Security was structurally sound? (Maybe if SSA taxes were raised to 80% of income)

I wonder if Bernie Madoff’s attorney’s tried that as a defense.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 11:54 AM

Romney put a lot of information out there, but think about it: When that line (and several other great lines) gets repeated 30 or more times over the next couple of days in various sources, people will have a chance to digest it more fully.

Vashta.Nerada on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

Quite agree. Replays of the clips, release of the transcript, highlights in political ads– much of it will be absorbed.

Plus, I fully expect Obama himself to (stupidly) revisit Romney’s points. In the next debate. Obama can’t bear the humiliation and can’t let things go. Obama himself will provide the occasion for Romney to elaborate.

de rigueur on October 4, 2012 at 11:56 AM

So increasing defense spending by $2T, as Obama said Romney would and was not denied, is now considered a very progressive liberal view? By this logic, both Clintons should be branded as TEA party zealots for having the conservative view of gutting defense spending.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 11:51 AM

I dunno, since you refused to attack my actual statement as it was presented with the actual argument and instead chose to change the subject, should I consider you to be actually asking a question for a real answer, or are you just deflecting pathetically like Obama last night.
I would definitely have to wonder if you could beat Obama in a debate.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 11:58 AM

You might just have had a bad performance when Al Gore is suggesting that altitude sickness was the problem.

You might just have had a bad performance when Michael Moore blames John Kerry.

You might just have had a bad performance when Chris Matthews isn’t enthralled.

Happy Nomad on October 4, 2012 at 11:59 AM

On a side note, after the debate while everyone was on stage I saw Romney go back to the podium and grab all his notes up….smart. I also remember during the debate Obama had a pen and was writing on his notes. I would give anything to see those notes. I bet the farm that all Obama kept writing was “oh sh!t”….over and over again.

Renee on October 4, 2012 at 12:02 PM

Romney: That statement also says that we are endowed by our Creator with the right to pursue happiness as we choose. I interpret that as, one, making sure that those people who are less fortunate and can’t care for themselves are cared by — by one another.

We’re a nation that believes we’re all children of the same God. And we care for those that have difficulties — those that are elderly and have problems and challenges, those that disabled, we care for them. And we look for discovery and innovation, all these thing desired out of the American heart to provide the pursuit of happiness for our citizens.

Anyone else see a flaw in this logic as I did? Anyone other than BobMbx see anything relating to military spending here? Bob, for a trip to Europe, $10,000 and a brand new car, what is your name bob?

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:02 PM


You didn’t post the one where Romney said that all those bankrupt companies were Obama campaign donors. Obama’s grimace there was just priceless.

lorien1973 on October 4, 2012 at 10:45 AM

YES!!

I hope Romney hammers this point home even more forcefully in the future.

Corruption.

pseudonominus on October 4, 2012 at 12:03 PM

The most enduring sound bite of the evening will be the words “trickle down government”, a highly effective response to the Left’s whining about trickle down economics.

I had an Eeyore approach to the debates, thinking that the best case was that neither candidate hurt himself badly. I had thought that Mitt’s arguing with Jim Lehrer about the rules early in the debate would come across as whiny (but the focus groups seemed to see this as likable combativeness). In spite of my pessimism about Romney’s ability to debate, going into the debate, I thought that his reversion to 3 to 5 bullet points at the end of each segment was effective.

I thought that Obama really lost the debate in his closing statement, in which he rambled on and looked lost; whereas Mitt’s closing statement was very strong and focused.

I was surprised, pleasantly, when the pundits were clearly giving the debate win to Romney, and exstatic when Tingles and the Left were going into full meltdown in the spin room.

Pleasant surprises are always the best kind.

Old Fritz on October 4, 2012 at 12:04 PM

I watched the debate only, no post-debate analysis, and let me tell you, reading everything this morning…the second time around Mitt only gets better. My husband is an Obama voter and thought Romney nailed it.

My only critique for Romney would be to actually say the words “the past four years” more often. I thought those were his best moments, to actually remind people that Obama has had a chance to do all of this already. When Obama said “we’re not here to talk about the past” Romney should have seized on it and said “i wouldnt want to talk about it either”.

peachaeo on October 4, 2012 at 12:18 PM

I liked the way Romney used the 90 billion giveaway to green jobs and related it to other issues. “You could have hired 2 million teachers with that”, “it’s 50 years worth of tax credits for oil companies”. This makes relate-able to people, this is the way you do it. Way to go Romney!

Dollayo on October 4, 2012 at 12:19 PM

Actually, he did mention gas doubled under Obama

BrianVII on October 4, 2012 at 12:20 PM

That is an extraordinary interpretation. I would say, a very progressive liberal one that proves his views are progressive.

His only saving grace is that he is not in fact Obama.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

You’re assumption is this is done by the government. Yet, throughout Romney’s discussion, he continually emphasized free market solutions. The statement “cared by — by one another” is a foundational principle of people of faith, but the call to the faithful is for their personal involvement, not to call in the government.

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 12:23 PM

The look on Romnay’s face, when Obama brought up oil, was priceless! Like a shark smelling blood in the water. You could see what he was thinking…”I Got You!” Unfortunately he didn’t make a big issue of the failed companies & the money going overseas, but, over all, you can’t complain, given how low the expectations were!
Final Update for those following:How to take out the Obama Enemy media: http://paratisiusa.blogspot.com/2012/09/an-open-letter-to-those-who-should-know.html?spref=tw

God Bless America!

paratisi on October 4, 2012 at 12:24 PM

You’re assumption is this is done by the government. Yet, throughout Romney’s discussion, he continually emphasized free market solutions. The statement “cared by — by one another” is a foundational principle of people of faith, but the call to the faithful is for their personal involvement, not to call in the government.

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 12:23 PM

Save your keystrokes, you’re talking to a Ronulan, nothing Mitt does will ever be good enough for him because Mitt isn’t Herr Doktor…

SWalker on October 4, 2012 at 12:25 PM

Anyone else see a flaw in this logic as I did? Anyone other than BobMbx see anything relating to military spending here? Bob, for a trip to Europe, $10,000 and a brand new car, what is your name bob?

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:02 PM

astonerii’s entire post on the subject. Emphasis mine:

It was a wash for me. He used the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence to pivot into his defense of the socialist welfare state.

The role of government — look behind us: the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

The role of government is to promote and protect the principles of those documents. First, life and liberty. We have a responsibility to protect the lives and liberties of our people, and that means the military, second to none. I do not believe in cutting our military. I believe in maintaining the strength of America’s military.

Second, in that line that says, we are endowed by our Creator with our rights — I believe we must maintain our commitment to religious tolerance and freedom in this country. That statement also says that we are endowed by our Creator with the right to pursue happiness as we choose. I interpret that as, one, making sure that those people who are less fortunate and can’t care for themselves are cared by — by one another.

We’re a nation that believes we’re all children of the same God. And we care for those that have difficulties — those that are elderly and have problems and challenges, those that disabled, we care for them. And we look for discovery and innovation, all these thing desired out of the American heart to provide the pursuit of happiness for our citizens.

But we also believe in maintaining for individuals the right to pursue their dreams, and not to have the government substitute itself for the rights of free individuals. And what we’re seeing right now is, in my view, a — a trickle-down government approach which has government thinking it can do a better job than free people pursuing their dreams. And it’s not working.

That is an extraordinary interpretation. I would say, a very progressive liberal one that proves his views are progressive.

His only saving grace is that he is not in fact Obama.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

My name is Gladiator, and the time for honoring yourself will soon be at an end.

Scotland, please, and make it a Volt.

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 12:29 PM

I just wish he had mentioned rising gas prices. (I couldn’t bring myself to watch Barackabama until the last 10 minutes or so, so I’m not sure if Romney did mention gas prices).

SouthernGent on October 4, 2012 at 11:20 AM

He did, he did, he did.

John the Libertarian on October 4, 2012 at 12:32 PM

You’re assumption is this is done by the government. Yet, throughout Romney’s discussion, he continually emphasized free market solutions. The statement “cared by — by one another” is a foundational principle of people of faith, but the call to the faithful is for their personal involvement, not to call in the government.

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 12:23 PM

It is not an assumption. Romney said it, over and over and over and over again during the debate. He is going to put the money back into Medicare. He is going to make sure that Social Security is secure. He is going to get more people working in order for them to pay the taxes needed to care for the poor and old.

It is not an assumption, it is a simple fact. The reason there was a pause between “cared by — by one another.” is because there is an internal cognitive dissonance in that very thought. It does not work out…

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:35 PM

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 12:29 PM

I recall highlighting with strong text the statement I was criticizing. Sorry if you are incapable of seeing things like that. Like I said, you changed the subject.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:38 PM

Told ya’ll they weren’t going to know what hit them.

rollthedice on October 4, 2012 at 12:45 PM

It was a wash for me. He used the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence to pivot into his defense of the socialist welfare state.

The role of government — look behind us: the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence.

The role of government is to promote and protect the principles of those documents. First, life and liberty. We have a responsibility to protect the lives and liberties of our people, and that means the military, second to none. I do not believe in cutting our military. I believe in maintaining the strength of America’s military.

Second, in that line that says, we are endowed by our Creator with our rights — I believe we must maintain our commitment to religious tolerance and freedom in this country. That statement also says that we are endowed by our Creator with the right to pursue happiness as we choose. I interpret that as, one, making sure that those people who are less fortunate and can’t care for themselves are cared by — by one another.

We’re a nation that believes we’re all children of the same God. And we care for those that have difficulties — those that are elderly and have problems and challenges, those that disabled, we care for them. And we look for discovery and innovation, all these thing desired out of the American heart to provide the pursuit of happiness for our citizens.

But we also believe in maintaining for individuals the right to pursue their dreams, and not to have the government substitute itself for the rights of free individuals. And what we’re seeing right now is, in my view, a — a trickle-down government approach which has government thinking it can do a better job than free people pursuing their dreams. And it’s not working.

That is an extraordinary interpretation. I would say, a very progressive liberal one that proves his views are progressive.

His only saving grace is that he is not in fact Obama.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 11:47 AM

Now BobMbx, Really, when you look at that, what you see is me complaining about his military stand? I highlighted the text I found wrong with strong text, I even used the word he used at the beginning of the statement… I interpret that as in my statement about it. That is an extraordinary interpretation.

So, you are going to argue that you are criticizing me fairly? Your a hack, and a crappy one at that. You would really have a hard time winning a debate against Obama.

Romney: I want to take that $716 billion you’ve cut and put it back into Medicare. By the way, we can include a prescription program if we need to improve it.

But the idea of cutting $716 billion from Medicare to be able to balance the additional cost of Obamacare is, in my opinion, a mistake.

And with regards to young people coming along, I’ve got proposals to make sure Medicare and Social Security are there for them without any question.

Yeah, seems to me that he is talking about government, and not just individuals helping each other out. If he was promoting people helping people under a voluntary basis, I would be ecstatically voting for him. Instead, he is going to make certain that Social Security and Medicare remain a part of our nation destroying its morals for generations to come.

As it stands, I will be checking the box next to his name and holding my nose doing it. He can change that by promoting a Balanced Budget Amendment to make it certain that he really beleives…
ROMNEY: Good. I’m glad you raised that, and it’s a — it’s a critical issue. I think it’s not just an economic issue, I think it’s a moral issue. I think it’s, frankly, not moral for my generation to keep spending massively more than we take in, knowing those burdens are going to be passed on to the next generation and they’re going to be paying the interest and the principal all their lives.

And the amount of debt we’re adding, at a trillion a year, is simply not moral.

No wonder the country is so screwed up, Republicans have very few people who even understand that proper role of government and cannot take a persons words and come up with their intentions and meanings!

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:45 PM

I recall highlighting with strong text the statement I was criticizing. Sorry if you are incapable of seeing things like that. Like I said, you changed the subject.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:38 PM

When one engages in cherrypicking to advance a position, its bad form to provide the counter-argument.

D-

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 12:47 PM

It is not an assumption. Romney said it, over and over and over and over again during the debate. He is going to put the money back into Medicare. He is going to make sure that Social Security is secure. He is going to get more people working in order for them to pay the taxes needed to care for the poor and old.

It is not an assumption, it is a simple fact. The reason there was a pause between “cared by — by one another.” is because there is an internal cognitive dissonance in that very thought. It does not work out…

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:35 PM

Government funded is different than government run. The government runs the post office. Obama wants the government to run healthcare, medicare, and student loans. Romney isn’t trying to remove government funding, he is trying to use free market solutions to allow people to make their own choice, and the market to increase efficiency and reduce cost.

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 12:50 PM

When one engages in cherrypicking to advance a position, its bad form to provide the counter-argument.

D-

BobMbx on October 4, 2012 at 12:47 PM

Did not cherry pick anything. Romney stated his views are progressive. He provided a specific statement that supports this idea. Just because he also intoned a conservative idea does not negate that progressive one.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:51 PM

Government funded is different than government run. The government runs the post office. Obama wants the government to run healthcare, medicare, and student loans. Romney isn’t trying to remove government funding, he is trying to use free market solutions to allow people to make their own choice, and the market to increase efficiency and reduce cost.

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 12:50 PM

Looking to see the part there that is conservative…
Steal money from one group to subsidize another group through the force of the government’s monopoly of the use of force.

Yeah, I robbed that person, but I gave all the money to other more needy people is not a good way to run a country.

It also leaves in place the whole concept of politicians using other people’s money to buy votes and voters voting for the wealth creation of others to be moved into their pockets.

Yeah, Romney is going to use the free market. The well regulated free market. By forcibly transferring money from one person who could freely use that money any way they want, to another person who would be restricted in their use of the money to what the government tells them they must spend it on. Totally conservative and constitutional in spirit and law!

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Yeah, Romney is going to use the free market. The well regulated free market. By forcibly transferring money from one person who could freely use that money any way they want, to another person who would be restricted in their use of the money to what the government tells them they must spend it on. Totally conservative and constitutional in spirit and law!

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 12:55 PM

The more you speak the less sense you make. Maybe time to stop.

Romney hasn’t proposed mandatory healthcare, and proposes repealing Obamacare.

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 1:05 PM

The more you speak the less sense you make. Maybe time to stop.

Romney hasn’t proposed mandatory healthcare, and proposes repealing Obamacare.

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 1:05 PM

Medicare friend, medicare…

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 1:06 PM

So it is now the conservative position to cancel medicare?

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 1:07 PM

Team Romney – “I’ve been in business for twenty-five years, and I don’t have any idea what you are talking about!”

Pantload – “I just filled my pants!”

Seven Percent Solution on October 4, 2012 at 1:11 PM

So it is now the conservative position to cancel medicare?

STL_Vet on October 4, 2012 at 1:07 PM

Should be. How is it conservative to keep it? It is not a legitimate concern of the Federal government. It was a power grab that was ruled Unconstitutional until FDR threatened to stack the Supreme Court and they caved. Social Security was anyways. Medicare is just an add-on to Social Security.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 1:14 PM

“I don’t have any plan to cut education funding. But I do agree with you that where you put your money says something about your priorities. You put $90 billion into green energy. I’m all for green energy but you could have hired two million teachers with that money.

I think this is the zinger that left the biggest mark. It points out to one of the Democrats’ key constituent groups, teachers, that other special interests, green cronies of the president, environmentalists and alternative energy venture capitalists who give campaign donations to Obama and other Dems, come first to Obama. Even activists in the teachers’ unions have to consider all those billions going to Solyndra etc instead of their own pockets.

To a wider audience, it shows Obama’s hypocrisy, showering his connected friends with billions while giving lip service to education.

Tactically and strategically brilliant.

rokemronnie on October 4, 2012 at 1:17 PM

Tactically and strategically brilliant.

rokemronnie on October 4, 2012 at 1:17 PM

Definitely killer!

If he refines it to Obama’s real stated goal of 100,000 math and science teachers, it would be “With that 90 billion dollars your 100,000 math and science teachers could have been funded for 20 years, enough to educate an entire generation!”

I personally think that would be somewhat more destructive.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 1:30 PM

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 1:30 PM

You’re looking for corn nuggets in a field of stones.

itsspideyman on October 4, 2012 at 1:47 PM

If he refines it to Obama’s real stated goal of 100,000 math and science teachers, it would be “With that 90 billion dollars your 100,000 math and science teachers could have been funded for 20 years, enough to educate an entire generation!”

I personally think that would be somewhat more destructive.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 1:30 PM

Agreed. Add in “Instead you decided to give billions to your cronies, betting on them instead of betting on America’s teachers and our future, our kids”.

rokemronnie on October 4, 2012 at 1:57 PM

You’re looking for corn nuggets in a field of stones.

itsspideyman on October 4, 2012 at 1:47 PM

Guess it is a cultural statement. Makes no sense to me.

It is like saying what I am looking for is not there. I think there is value in what he said, but I think he could extract more value from it by making the attack more specifically targeted.

We went though the stimuless where the government hired a bunch of people who were laterally moved from one job that was not stimuless funded to to ones that were stimuless funded on a temporary basis. Work for a bit, get laid off. So the 2 million teachers for one year works against American values. The 100,000 for 20 years works better, although I still do not see it as the federal government’s job to be in education at all. Well, except perhaps the military schools.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 1:58 PM

Agreed. Add in “Instead you decided to give billions to your cronies, betting on them instead of betting on America’s teachers and our future, our kids”.

rokemronnie on October 4, 2012 at 1:57 PM

Hope someone on his team is reading.

astonerii on October 4, 2012 at 1:58 PM

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